His Job Is To Shed Light Not To Master

Howard Gossage was an inspiring man. A rogue gentleman who plied his trade in the city by the Bay. An academic who taught advertising at Penn State and wrote eloquently about the business. A man who saw himself as a critic and reformer. A man of the people. A man with big ideas for the brands is his charge. He had an agency in a restored firehouse, with characters like Marshall McCluhan and Tom Wolfe dropping by for an afternoon chat and tea. He was also a man of outrageous, but dead-on statements, like this one:
“Is advertising worth saving? From an economic point of view I don’t think that most of it is. From an aesthetic point of view I’m damn sure it’s not; it’s thoughtless, boring, and there is simply too much of it.” _HG



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.